We have been clear that there is more money going into our schools than ever before, and since 2017, we have given every local authority more money for every 5 to 16 year old in every school and made funding fairer across the country.
Our school sixth forms and colleges have a vital role to play in making sure people have the skills they need to get on in life. That is why we have protected the base rate of funding for 16 to 19 year olds until 2020. We continue to allocate further funding for specific needs such as an extra £500m for providers to support disadvantaged students.
Exclusion should not be considered the end point for any child; it has to be the start of something new and positive – with alternative provision offering smaller class sizes and tailored support.
We want to create opportunity for everyone. Employment has risen in every UK region under this government, wages are outstripping inflation, the gap between disadvantaged pupils and their peers has narrowed and the proportion of 16 and 17-year-olds in education or apprenticeships is at its highest ever.
We want an apprenticeship system that works for all employers – big and small. Our reforms were designed and driven by businesses of all sizes to make sure apprentices learn the skills employers need. Apprenticeships are now longer, higher-quality, with more off-the-job training and provide for a proper assessment at the end.
Young people are participating in education and training at their highest rate since consistent records began and the latest figures show that the overall proportion of 16-18 year olds not in education, employment or training (NEET) was at 6.3%, the lowest rate on record.
Today’s data shows why our new register of children not in school is so important. Illegal schools are unregulated and present a danger to both the quality of education and the welfare of those children who attend them – a register will vastly improve councils’ capacity to identify those children and intervene.
Two years ago, we introduced the apprenticeship Levy to create long term sustainable funding for apprenticeships and to give employers of all sizes flexibility to provide new and existing staff with a range of training opportunities.
Today, Monday 1 April, the Home Secretary has launched a consultation to ensure public bodies, including hospitals and schools, raise concerns about children at risk of becoming involved in knife crime.
Our reforms to the apprenticeships system have fundamentally changed what an apprenticeship involves, and the long-term opportunities an apprenticeship can provide.